NATIONAL INTELLIGENCE ESTIMATE
Possibilities of Greater Militancy by the Chinese Communists
Submitted by Ihe DIRECTOR Of CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE
Concurred in by Ihe UNITED STATES INTELLIGENCE BOARD
Ai indicated overleaf3
The following intelligence organizations participated in Ihe preparation of this estimate;
The Centre! Intelligence Agency ond the intelligence orgonixotioni of theof Stole, Defense, the Army, iho Novy, (he Alt force, ond NSA.
Director of Intelligence ond Research, Deportmenr of State Director. Deft me Intelligence Agency
Astistont Chief of Staff for Intelligence, Deportment of tho Army Assistant Chief of Navot Operationseportment of the Novy Assistant Chief of Staff, Intelligence, USAF Director of the Notional Security Agency
The Atomic Energy Commission Representative to thend tho Assistant Director, federal Bureau of Investigation, tho subject being outside of theirjurisdiction.
CENTRAL INTELLIGENCE .AGEKCI
SUBJECT: POSSIBILITIES OF GREATER MTLTTANCX BY
TEE CHINESE CWKUNISTS
To consider the possibility of nore assertive Chinese Communist actions in tbe near future, arising from tbe coincidence of deepening Sino-Soviet dispute and recent Soviet negotiations with the West.
1. It is clear that the leadership of Communist China resents the turn of events which has seen the USSR move toward detente with the West at the very moment when the Sino-Soviet quarrel hasew peak of vindlctiveness. This raises tbe question whether tbe Chinese might conclude that their interests would be served by more assertive actions- We have some indicators of possible new Chinese actions, but theseslight as yet.
tba? especially perturbedpresent aomant, we do not believe that they will actor run very great risks, suchenewal of tboorajor invasion deep Into India. Over the pastin spite of their warlike oratory, they have followedcautious policy. Moreover, China's leadersconsider that the deepening Sino-Soviet dispute boschances of Soviet support for any Chlneae adventurism,this In turn raises the chances that the OS wouldto any extreme Chinese Initiatives. The Chinesefar shown marked reapect for US power, and we do uotto change this basic attitude.
this does not mean Chinese inaction. that the Chinese nay become more dlsogreeable, and
thereossibility that they will undertake somewhat moreinitiatives, ln the hope of attaining limited but visible gains ot minimum risk. In so acting, the Chinese would seek to disrupt future negotiations between tbe Soviets aod tbe West, and to demonstrate, that the courses they advocate are more likely to bring advantages to tbe Communist cause. The most likely auch Chinese initiatives vould be new pressures or incursionshe Indian border and In La06.
ft rajfl t
A. Tbe Indlea Border3
k. Peiping has eade no secret of the fact that Soviet military and economic assistance to India has been especially galling, es vns Moscow's stand during Chinese-Indian hostilities last fall. In addition to furthering tbelr basic objectives, tbe Chinese might hope that by increasing military pressure oloog the Indien frontiers or occupying part of the KEFA tbey could further embarrass Moscow by underlining tbe fact that it Is support -log (in Indie associated with the West rather then Communist China."
Chinese Communist forces presently in tbe Slno-Indian
border area have probably remained essentially unchanged since the fighting in the fallhough road Improvement and stockpiling nave probably improved their offensive capabilities. The Chinese
"Tbe Acting Director of Intelligence aod Research, Deportment of State, does not believe that Peiping will step up its military pressure along the Indian frontier or attempt to reoccupy KEFA
for the reasons given io this paragraph. Even if tbe Chinese Communists believe tbey can annoy end embarrass tha Soviets by
ouch action, they have no reason to believe the Soviets would alter tbelr policies toward Indiaesult. eiping attack coupled with Chinese intrnoslgence on tbe test-ban treaty would probably antagonize cany countries which last foil wore willing to resaia at least neutral oa tbe Slno-Indian border conflict."
vould be able to launch strong attacks anywhere along the frontier with little or no warning. The Indians have Improved their defenses in the Lodakh area. Thoy have also shifted their troops so that they oreetter tactical position to defend Assam, but for political and military reasons they have left much of the (EPA completely undefended. The Chinese would react vigorously to Indian movement of troops into disputed border areas or air maneuvers there, and aro capable of reoccupyiog vacated pocitioos with little warning or difficulty.
independently or io conjunction withpressures on India, tbe Chinese will almostto continue to exploit Pakistani concern overaid to India by seeking closer diplomatic, economic, orties with Pakiaton. Tbey might also encourage aPakistani posture io Kashmir- By these octionswould hope to exacerbate further Pakistani-US andrelations. They will also continue to woo Nepal in thecompleting tbe isolation of India in the subcontinent. ia an incursion into Nepal to suppress Tibetanwhich have taken refuge there.
Chinese might also take indirect actionareas, including clandestine support for dissident
tribal hill peoples. Indian military reparations against such dicsldence would be politically embarrassing to India and could even,uture tiae, provide the Chinese with adequate pretexts for direct military support of the hill tribes by moving their own forces beckA.
8. China's leaders say believe that the neutraliat-rightlst position in Laos is so shaky and the policy of the US so lacking In firmness that considerable gains could be made there quickly and without great risk. If so, they could encourage the DRV/PL to raise the level of military In addition, these tactics would place tbe USSRifficult position: Soviet reluctance to push the "national liberation struggle" would damage Moscow within tbe world Cocrcupist movement; on tbe other band, Soviet support of tbe Chinese would impede present Soviet effortetente with the US.
"The Acting Director of Intelligence and Research, Department of State, believes that tbe first sentence of this paragraph conflicts with tbe assessment inhat tho Chinese Conasuaists "will continue to show marked respect for US power.'1 He would also prefer thet the second sentence of this paragraphf so, they could encourage the DRV/pL to take additional and limited military action."
believe tbat the DHV.'PL would' probably be amenablethe tempo of Communist insurrection in Laos,seemed no Imminent danger of extreme US actionVietnam itself. Should there be evidence of suchwe doubt that Peiping's influence or leverage overbe sufficient to induce the DKV markedly to raiseante ln Laos.*
C. Other Possibilities
believe it highly unlikely that the Chineseincur the extreme risks involved in encouraging orovert attack on South Korea. We have no significantthey think of doing so. This is the one area ofwhere Soviet security interests are directly involved. conceivable, therefore, that the Chinese might estimatevould have to eater the fight oa tbe Chinese side If the US,
""The Acting Director of Intelligence and Besearch, Department of State, believes tbat this paragraph Ignores the similarity of interests of Peiping and Hanoi, and exaggerates tbeir willingness to quicken the tempo. Both apparently wish to keep their actions ln Laos within the present framework of erosive political-military tactics. Host importantly, they do not appear willing to risk significant escalation with the possibility of US counteraction. Furthermore, as long as they continue to accept the Geneve Agreements, Hanoi ln particular, but also Peiping, have an interest lnublic split with the Soviet Union over Laos and tbe consequent danger tbat tbe USSR, as co-chairman, will Join with the West in measures to condemn and even contain the Insurgent advance."
night try to persuade Hanoi to change tbetho war in South Vietnam by Introducing sore open DRVinto the struggle. Peiping might also attempt to assume
a more prominent role than it has yet demonstrated in tbe support of Communist insurgency in South Vietnam. To this end, It night markedly increase Chinese logistic support to the DRV. Tbe latter two courses seem nore likely to us than the first.
Chinese Coamunists can resume their harassment ofKntsu at will. It Is possible, but unlikely, that theyto seize one or nore of the offshore Islands.
Chinese might increase pressure on Hong Kong and
Macau, although they continue to be of considerable advantage to Peiping in their present status. ecision to involve the UK and Portugal would Involve Chinese policy considerations other than those discussed in this estimate.
* Acting Director of Intelligence and Research, Deportment of State, believes that the estimate In this paragraph should
be limited to those of the first and last sentences.
lb. risisifferent character could develop should border clashes occur between tbe USSR and Cccaninist China. They hava occurred In the past and, in the light of present Sino-Soviet relations, could take place on ao even larger scale in the future. If such clashes becace serious, they would tend to reduce tbe likelihood of Chinese Ccsizuclst noves against its other borders.
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White House National Security Council Deportment of State Department of Defense Atomic Energy Commission Federal Bureau o( InvestigationOriginal document.